The most well-known landmark in Cape Town and a must-see location is Table Mountain. A fantastic way to observe the city and its surroundings is to hike atop Table Mountain. The vistas are very breathtaking from the peak. Taking a cable car is the simplest and quickest method to reach the peak. Taking one of the hiking paths up Table Mountain is a lot harder, but it is also a lot more fun. Numerous ascent paths exist, and the mountain’s summit offers a few breathtaking treks. One of the most thrilling activities in Cape Town is hiking Table Mountain. Explore Cape Town’s famous hikes up Table Mountain on foot!
Table Mountain hike: how far?
There are five recognized routes that can be used to ascend Table Mountain: Platteklip Gorge, Skeleton Gorge, India Venster, Kasteelspoort, and Diagonal. The selected trial will determine the distance and duration. The shortest and most used path is the 2.5-kilometer Skeleton Gorge. The climb to the peak takes an hour to an hour and thirty minutes. Enjoy magical views and natural beauty with these top hikes on Table Mountain. Learn how to make the most of your journey here!
Is climbing Table Mountain hard?
Whatever the path used, climbing Table Mountain is difficult. Depending on the route, the average rise ranges from 600 to 700 meters. Because of the rocky terrain and the steepness of the paths, the descent is equally as challenging as the climb. From easy-going paths to more challenging hikes, explore Table Mountain with our list of incredible hikes! Get ready for a fantastic adventure!
- You should be rather safe if you trek up Table Mountain or take one of the well-traveled paths.
- In the winter, avoid going on a trek at night or in the late hours.
- Go on the weekend when there are more people if you choose a less traveled path.
- It’s preferable to trek in groups of two, particularly if you go during the week or out of season.
- You may take a guided trip up Table Mountain if you don’t want to trek the mountain alone. There are several trips that go along various routes.
- There are no water sources on the mountain until you reach the summit, so be sure to bring extra water—at least 1l per person. The only path that passes across the water is the Skeleton Gorge.
Table Mountain climb Free?
It is free to hike up Table Mountain. The National Park of Table Mountain is free to enter. Due to the fact that the path begins within the Kirstenbosch Botanical Garden, Skeleton Gorge is the only one that requires payment of an admission charge. Tickets must be purchased in order to ride the aerial cable car up or down. From easy-going paths to more challenging hikes, explore Table Mountain with our list of incredible hikes! Get ready for a fantastic adventure!
During the warmer summer months (December to February), early morning is best for walking on sun-exposed routes like Platteklip or India Venster. Before attempting the climb, you may have coffee and breakfast at one of the many excellent coffee shops in Cape Town that are near Table Mountain.
Evenings are also a terrific time, but for your own safety, avoid walking any of the paths at night. Check the wind before using the cable car since it may become quite windy in the summer and doesn’t run on certain days.
- November and March are the finest months to go to Cape Town, and these are also our favorite months for trekking on Table Mountain.
You may stroll pretty much whenever throughout the milder months (April to October); just make sure there won’t be a lot of rain. Being on top of Table Mountain in a downpour is unpleasant. Another thing to look out for is clouds. Postpone your visit if there are large clouds on the mountain’s summit since you may not be able to see much from there.
Table Mountain’s access.
The simplest method of getting to Cape Town is by renting a vehicle. It won’t cost much to hire a car for a few days if you and a friend are sharing a tiny vehicle.
Another way to go to Table Mountain is by using a hop-on/hop-off bus. There are four alternative tourist paths, two of which go to the Kirstenbosch Botanical Garden and the Lower Cable Car Station, respectively (the blue route). Two walking tours, a seal and harbor boat trip, and a sunset bus are all included in a two-day pass.
You may purchase a ticket that includes the bus, the cable car, and a free city walking tour if you intend to take the cable car up or down. Get ready for some unforgettable experiences with this guide to amazing hikes you can do on Table Mountain!
Cable car up Table Mountain
You may take the cable car one way or back if you don’t feel like walking up and down or don’t have enough time. There are a few pretty lovely pathways on the mountaintop, so don’t worry about missing the trekking portion if you ride the cable car. Whichever route you take, Table Mountain should unquestionably be on your Cape Town agenda.
- Amazing views of Cape Town may be seen from the cable car, which revolves anticlockwise during the journey. The cable car runs every day from 6.30 am (first car up) to 4 pm (latest vehicle up)/5 pm during the warmer months (November to March) (last car down).
- For adults, it costs ZAR 220 ($12) and for kids, it costs ZAR 120 ($6).
- Return tickets cost ZAR 395/US$22 in the morning, ZAR 340/US$19 after 1 o’clock, ZAR 195/US$11 in the morning, and ZAR 170/US$10 after 1 o’clock for minors.
- You may purchase a combination ticket that includes a round-trip cable car ride if you want to take the hop-on, hop-off bus. If you decide against renting a vehicle, this is your best choice.
Table Mountain Hikes
Claw High Table Mountain commands a standout 3- to 4-hour climb. Ascending Claw has yielded outstanding views of the surrounding landscape. A major motivator to climb Claw is viewing the vistas as you come down.
- Due to the impression of a high crime rate, Cape Town, South Africa, can frighten away visitors. Undoubtedly, criminality exists. South Africa is undoubtedly hazardous. Having said that, we didn’t feel any more endangered than the majority of big cities.
Most people would agree that this gorgeous city has become a well-known tourist attraction. There are many things to do in Cape Town thanks to the excellent infrastructure and tourist sector. The bizarre vistas of Table Mountain towering above the city are what people most associate with Cape Town. Numerous visitors and residents go to Table Mountain to hike, do rock climbing, abseil, or just take in the sights.
Although there is a cable car, trekking is the best way to appreciate this mountain’s splendor. Various experiences may be had by doing different hikes. We went on a number of hikes over our three weeks in Cape Town.
Explore the wonders of Table Mountain with these amazing hikes! Discover breathtaking views, wildlife, and a sense of accomplishment that comes from climbing to the summit.
1. Platteklip Gorge
Looking for a thrilling experience? Check out these incredible hikes on Table Mountain that are sure to make your journey unforgettable. This path begins beyond the cable car and is the shortest. While it is the most difficult trek up the mountain due to other ways maybe requiring some non-technical climbing, it is also the steepest. For our descent, we liked this track better.
The trailhead is located on Tafelberg Road, and it climbs the significant gorge separating Table Mountain’s front face (Africa’s face). The path is properly constructed, with stone stairways and erosion-resistant gabions, and there are no particularly difficult spots to travel. Since Platteklip is steep, it is better to ascend it slowly. Avoid trying to rush it and take plenty of breaks to enjoy the breathtaking views of Cape Town and Table Bay below.
Give yourself ample time to hike back up, even if your plan is to ride the cable car down. Hikers are frequently left stranded in the dark at the upper cable station when the cableway abruptly shuts down due to rapid weather changes.
Platteklip Gorge may be hot, cold, and windy, so don’t undervalue it. When an ice wind blows, the temperature at the peak may dip much lower than it does on Tafelberg Road, even in January and February. Make sure you have adequate water, a hat, sunscreen, and warm, windproof clothing with you even on the hottest summer days.
- around three kilometers up!
- Time: For really fit individuals, 1 hour, and for sluggish people, 3 hours.
- Rating: moderate to challenging, depending on one’s health and the environment
- Certainly younger kids, but it strains them.
- Dogs are not recommended and are not permitted on the cableway
- Always have plenty of water with you, especially in the summer.
2. Skeleton Gorge to Kirstenbosch Gardens
Although we did not personally trek this path, it is one of the busiest routes up Table Mountain. There is a cost to enter Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens, where this climb begins. Access is not from Cape Town but from Claremont.
This journey takes you to the back of Table Mountain, where you’ll get stunning views of Lion’s Head and Devil’s Peak after strolling through the gardens. We were informed that there is no charge to hike this trek down Table Mountain. Entry fees are 55 Rand for adults, 30 Rand for students, and 15 Rand for kids between the ages of 6 and 17.
- Approximate completion time: two to three hours
3. India Venster
At the Kloof Corner trailhead, the walk begins before the cable car. Follow the sign for India Venster after a little while. There are a few challenging spots on this path up the mountain, but overall it’s a lot of fun. There are numerous sizable rocks to scale as well as several ladders to help with the ascent. This is an extremely enjoyable approach to climbing Table Mountain and is not very challenging.
Looking for a thrilling experience? Check out these incredible hikes on Table Mountain that are sure to make your journey unforgettable.
- Two hours are projected to be needed to finish.
4. Kloof Corner
On this tour, you must go with a guide or a knowledgeable local. We were fortunate that our buddy Andy, who has walked it several times, would take us up. Before the cable car, at Kloof Corner, the route begins. Early on, it takes a wrong turn and climbs vertically with the help of a chain rope.
The majority of the trek involves bouldering since the track is not clearly marked. There are three portions that call for you to use a loose chain to vertically ascend up a crack. Without any gear, this walk is the most difficult one there is. The best path is this one. Looking for the best hikes on Table Mountain? Don’t look any further! Here are some incredible trails to visit for breathtaking views and an unforgettable experience.
- Two hours are projected to be needed to finish.
5. Hike to Lion’s Head
The trek to Lion’s Head is simple yet wonderful. This climb offers breathtaking views of Cape Town and Table Mountain as well as the whole coast. This climb is perfect for watching the sun go down since it offers unhindered views of the shore. For the descent, don’t forget your flashlight. Looking for the best hikes on Table Mountain? Don’t look any further! Here are amazing trails you can explore for breathtaking views and an unforgettable experience.
The short spiral route starts on Signal Hill Drive, below Lion’s Head. From the summit’s 669 meters above sea level, one can see the city bowl, Devil’s Peak, the well-known front face of Table Mountain, the majestic Twelve Apostles, and the breathtaking scenery of the Atlantic seaboard from Oudekraal through Bakoven, Camps Bay, and Clifton to Sea Point and Green Point, Table Bay, and, of course, Robben Island. Explore the stunning sights and breathtaking views on Table Mountain with this list of amazing hikes. Ready, set, go!
You must do the quick and very simple trek to Lion’s Head if you want to enjoy everything the Park has to offer.
Full moons are celebrated in Cape Town by ascending Lion’s Head to see them rise over the distant Hottentots Holland mountains in the east. The summit may be very busy on certain holidays. Please be aware that if you want to join in the fun, the initial steep descent, drinking, and darkness might all result in major risks. There have been several accidents, at least one of which was fatal.
- around 2 kilometers one way
- Time: one hour and thirty minutes upward
- simple with some minor rock climbing
- Yes, kids, but you might need help with the chains.
- Canines: Not suggested.
- On this path, there is no water.
6. Cable Car Costs
Adult tickets cost 240 Rand roundtrip or 125 Rand one way, while child tickets cost 115 Rand roundtrip or 60 Rand one way. Pricing is valid until September 2016. Prices for round-trip tickets will rise by 10-15 Rand as of October 2016. Students and older citizens are eligible for discounts. Have the urge to explore? Check out these awe-inspiring hikes around Table Mountain! A perfect activity for outdoor adventurers who enjoy the scenery with each step!
7. The Pipe Track
This stroll starts at the Tafelberg Road and Kloof Nek crossroads. The Pipe Track is exactly what it sounds like: a route constructed to support a pipeline that passes beneath the Twelve Apostles, a collection of mountains. This pipeline was built in the late 19th century to bring water from Disa Gorge in Table Mountain’s Back Table, through the Woodhead Tunnel through the mountain in Slangolie Ravine, to the Molteno Reservoir in Oranjezicht, helping to satisfy the thirst of the growing Cape Town.
The walk is popular and well-traveled despite some particularly rocky sections; many locals frequent different spots on a regular basis; it is a part of life along the Atlantic coast.
The Pipe Track is most beautiful in the winter when many of its protea species are in bloom, and early in the mornings of summer. The pipe track is extremely vulnerable to the summertime noon sun.
- In one direction, it is around 6 kilometers from Corridor Ravine.
- Return: 4 hours and 4 minutes
- Corridor and Slangolie are both rated as being basic.
- Yes, kids, but the journey overall is difficult.
- yes Canines
- In the summer, start at the faucet and consume plenty of water.
You’ll enjoy tranquil views of the Atlantic Ocean and a less crowded approach if you climb the mountain from the Camp’s Bay side.
You have two alternatives for where to begin your journey: you may either park on Theresa Road and walk up the Jeep road to the Pipe Track, which might extend your trip by an additional hour. To reach the Kasteelspoort turnoff for the latter, and turn left once you are on the Pipe Track.
You should stop often to drink water and take in the scenery as you ascend this gorgeous path. On a clear day, you’ll have the chance to see the Twelve Apostles, Lion’s Head, the ocean, and Robben Island. The mountain will provide early morning protection from the heat, making this trek enjoyable even on hotter days.
- Once at the top, you’ll see the “diving board” to your right, which is often used for pictures but shouldn’t be tried by the timid or on a windy day.
You may still see some pieces of the ancient Cableway, which was used in the 1800s to transport goods to the top of the mountain during the building of the dams, on this path. If you wish to take the cable car down, it will take you around an hour to walk there from the top.
- Time: 2 to 4 hours for one trip,
9. Maclear’s Beacon to Upper Cableway Station walk
Even though the elevation of this trek, at 1 088 meters, is just 21 meters above the Upper Cableway Station, it is necessary if you want to be able to boast that you have been to the top of Table Mountain.
The highest point
To go to the Western Table’s diagonally opposite corner from the Upper Cableway Station, use the main route; make sure you’re on the proper track by looking for plaques that serve as markers. You may walk over in 10 to 15 minutes; it is not difficult. At that point, chains and poles have been installed to help with the quick descent of the rough stairs at the edge. There is no other spot where you should try to descend. Painterly yellow footsteps indicate the route to Maclear’s Beacon.
If there is a low cloud or mist on the mountain, do not undertake this trek. It is so simple to get confused and lose your bearings.
- 5.5km total distance
- Duration: 45 to 1 hour to go reach Maclear’s Beacon
- Easy rating
- Having children:
- Dogs: not suggested
- No water is present along this route.
10. Smuts Track: Skeleton Gorge to Maclear’s Beacon
One of the most popular hikes on Table Mountain is the Smuts Track, which is particularly well-liked in the summer when the Afromontane forest provides shade practically the whole way up the hardest stretch, Skeleton Gorge. The ascent is unrelentingly steep, but it isn’t tough or requires any more skill than climbing a wooden ladder and a few rocky stairs. When they go all the way to Maclear’s Beacon, though, a lot of people underestimate the effort needed. Avoid the same error by being prepared.
The walk begins at the Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens, but the most interesting part of this journey starts where Skeleton Gorge and the Contour Path meet. The first 40 to 75 minutes are spent in the woods climbing stairs made of logs and stones. A set of wooden ladders about two-thirds of the way up makes it easier to climb over the high, sometimes-slippery rocks.
Skeleton Gorge has slick spots even in the summer, so use extra caution then and in the winter. When it’s raining heavily or just after it, stay away from this road.
- Approximately 4 kilometers.
- Time: for the really fit, 2 hours; for the less fit, 4 hours (one-way)
- Rating: fair, with no tan in the second part.
- Having children:
- Dogs: not suggested
- Mountain streams often run, but it’s wise to carry your own water.
Another enjoyable experience is rappelling with Abseil Africa. The price is 795 Rand per person, not including cable car fees. This excursion lasts 45 minutes to an hour and involves abseiling 1,000 feet down a cliff.
- *Estimated Times are from the route’s bottom to its highest rim. There are several pathways to explore once on the summit of Table Mountain.
Table Mountain National Park hiking safety
Due to attacks and muggings that have happened in and around Table Mountain National Park, we want to give tourists and regular mountain visitors as much information as we can to keep you safe. Explore the stunning sights and breathtaking views on Table Mountain with this list of amazing hikes. Ready, set, go!
One of the nicest experiences you can have is walking anywhere in Table Mountain National Park or on Table Mountain itself. Follow one of the recommended pathways to visit the park’s attractions. Get ready for some unforgettable experiences with this guide to the amazing hikes you can do on Table Mountain!
Please follow the basic safety procedures since the mountain may be dangerous for those who are unprepared or untrained.
Basic Mountain Safety Guidelines:
- It’s best to stroll in a group of four rather than by yourself.
- Make a sensible choice, then choose that road. Set aside plenty of time and leave early. Inform someone of your intended destination and return time.
- The slowest person on the expedition should be the leader.
- Keep each other close if you get lost. Instead, make an effort to go the other way. Remember that climbing up is tougher than going down.
- You should always bring waterproof clothing and use walking or hiking boots, even in the height of summer. Wear a hat or cap and sunscreen while it’s hot outside. The weather might rapidly shift.
- If you become lost or have to stop because of bad weather, keep together and stay where you are. The closest location is where you can shelter from the wind and rain.
- If there is an injury, spend some time analyzing the situation. Send two people to the injured person’s side while keeping the third person nearby. If you can, mark the location on a map and send it with the individuals going for help.
An essential hint
- Read the warnings on the park’s hiking map and stick to the beaten trail, which will be indicated on the map. Avoid cutting corners, especially while going into ravines.
- Always bring extra food and water with you in case of delay, especially during the summer. Keep an eye on the time and the weather, and if you think it will be bad or you will be late, turn back.
- Bring a phone that is fully charged. Even though certain parts of the Park have poor mobile phone coverage, you can always locate a spot where you can use a cell phone more quickly than a landline.
Three Personal Security Guidelines
Table Mountain is an urban park, so please use common sense and follow the same safety precautions as you would everywhere else. Have the urge to explore? Check out these awe-inspiring hikes around Table Mountain! This is an excellent activity for outdoor enthusiasts who enjoy taking in the scenery with each step!
- By not displaying cash, cameras, or other valuables in plain sight, avoid drawing unwanted attention.
- If criminal approaches you, don’t fight back. Give over your belongings because if you don’t, a thief can become aggressive.
- Set up your phone with emergency contacts before embarking on a hike.
- Excellent vistas may be found around every bend.
Points to remember. hikes on table mountain
Please treat Table Mountain National Park with care since it is a World Heritage Site and an environmentally sensitive region with species and animals that are endemic to the area. This will aid park officials in preserving the area’s beloved and very rare natural setting. Explore the stunning sights and breathtaking views on Table Mountain with this list of amazing hikes. Ready, set, go!
- Nothing but pictures are taken, and nothing but footprints are left. Never remove seeds, rocks, plants, or flowers, or damage or step on any plants or flowers.
- All of the animals and birds in the park have vicious bites, including daisies, baboons, and even the African penguin, so don’t feed, touch, or injure them!
- Losses of life and property may result from wildfires. Never start a fire anywhere else outside the specified braai (barbecue) sites. Never scatter the butts of cigarettes.
Tourist Safety Rangers. hikes on table mountain
In accordance with the park’s safety and security plan, 52 devoted and trained employees monitor the park with dogs, cars, and radios as part of a strong partnership with the South African Police Service. They also fully intervene when events do occur.
There are now visitor information centers at the parking lots on Tafelberg Road and at Lion’s Head, as well as a security hut in Platteklip Gorge. Co-opting volunteer organizations and restructuring the organization of honorary rangers are both being done to help.
Contact Information for Emergencies
- Call 086 110 6417 in case of an emergency.
- 911 for SAPS (South African Police Service) emergencies (02110111 on cell)
- Call (021) 480 7700 for emergency services in Connecticut.
- Call (021) 467 8002 in case of emergency CT Central OPS
- These contact centers are all equipped to handle TMNP problems and look into shady things.
Additional figures that may be useful include:
NSRI emergency line: 082 911 TM cable car company emergency line: (021) 424 0015
How the TMNP keeps you secure. hikes on table mountain
In order to protect our guests, TMNP is currently doing all in its power.
The following proactive programs are in place using the available resources (financial and human resources):
- Roving Patrols in Visible Uniform
- CCTV, night scopes, and transparent stakeout devices are used for monitoring and surveillance.
- collecting data
- Information Desks for Visitors
- Gateway Administration
- Communications for Car Guard Management
The members of the patrol unit are:
- The park is regularly patrolled by 52 rangers.
- 16 of them rangers have dog handling training.
- 40 learners from the department of labor.
- A police officer patrolling on a bicycle.
- In order to assure your safety, park management maintains ongoing working connections with the local SAPS and the government.
A temporary committee of volunteers with time, skills, and experience to contribute was established during a safety meeting held at Newlands Forest Station on February 15. The group will develop a plan to help make Table Mountain safer by enlisting volunteer contributions, under the leadership of Ray Chaplin and TMNP management.
Information about climbing Table Mountain
Given the fact that more people perish on Table Mountain than on Mount Everest, it is obviously crucial to understand what you are getting into. in addition to choosing a guided climb up Table Mountain that is appropriate for your level of fitness. This remark should not deter you, however, since there are several hiking trails available, and there is something for everyone. We do want to underline that if you are considering participating in a Table Mountain walk, thorough planning and preparation are important.
What to Pack. hikes on table mountain
Bring at least 1.5 liters of water and some snacks for eating along the way on your climb up Table Mountain. Don loose, comfortable clothes and suitable running or hiking shoes. Even though it’s supposed to be hot throughout the summer, always pack a lightweight jacket or warm layer since the top might still feel chilly if a mist appears. Learn more.
FAQ. hikes on table mountain
We understand that before beginning your ascent of Table Mountain, there are probably a billion and one things you’d want to know and plan for. To assist you in organizing your climb up Table Mountain, we have compiled a list of commonly asked questions. Learn more.
Safety. hikes on table mountain
Table Mountain is not to be trifled with. At 1087 meters above sea level, it is a towering formation with big boulders, high cliffs, jagged edges, and a startling fall. You must approach this peak carefully and with respect. Safety is of utmost importance. Learn more.
Scrambling. hikes on table mountain
While climbing Table Mountain is exciting and thrilling, it’s crucial to understand what you’re getting into. Scrambling is a common descriptor for many of the hiking routes on Table Mountain. Find out more.
Guides. hikes on table mountain
Our crew has expanded as a result of the popularity of our guided climbs up Table Mountain. We at Walk Addicts are fortunate to have a fantastic team of Table Mountain hiking guides who are all enthusiastic about what we do and the places we hike. Learn more.
Climate Advice. hikes on table mountain
It is usually advisable to schedule your trek up Table Mountain around the weather if you are in Cape Town. Plan your trek or tour early in your visit, allowing enough time for the regularly changing weather conditions on Table Mountain. Too many tourists disregard weather forecasts and risk their safety. Learn more.
Study up before you go. hikes on table mountain
The most fascinating mountain in the world has to be Table Mountain. There are several distinct hiking trails, making it a hiker’s paradise. It is about 500 million years old and has more plant species than any other inhabited location. Before your trek, educate yourself about Table Mountain, and then let our experts explain everything in context.
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